“The Lord’s message rang out from you…how you turned to God from idols to serve” 1 Th.1:9
I remember when I was a little girl, Mother and Daddy took us to the mountains several times. On occasion, we would stand in an area and yell only to hear our voice come back in an echo. I always thought it was interesting how my voice sounded realizing how it must sound to others. Have you ever heard your voice on a recording and cringed at how it sounded? Our passage this morning has more meaning than we might think. ‘The Greek term execheo – translated ‘rang out’ is derived from the Greek word echos…In Paul’s day, the word might be used to describe a clap of thunder or the blast of a trumpet. The word emphasized reverberation like that of an echo’ Letters to the Thessalonians, Gene L. Green.
As we are walking out this life our behavior and actions become living proof of our faith. When our faith is small the echo from it will be mere whispers where on-lookers must strain their ears to hear. When our faith is great the spiritual reverberation will sound like thunder and those near and far will hear its message. How do we ensure our faith will be heard as echoes instead of whispers? The same way as the Thessalonians did long ago –we turn away from the idols of our hearts …money… power …fame…relationships. Idols are those things deeply imbedded in our heart that we have elevated to worship status. Whatever we focus on most will become our idol where we offer our time, resources and passion. Worshipping an idol serves the flesh while worshipping God serves the spirit. One benefits our flesh while the other benefits the kingdom. The only way to have faith that echoes the spirit is to turn away from our idols and turn to God. That is when the Lord’s message will echo across the horizon of our lives instead of the world's message.
‘Every turning to automatically involves an inherent turning from. That’s the nature of a turn. With our deliberate turn to God comes a deliberate turning away from our old life and our previous attempts to remedy the restlessness of our souls’ Children of the Day – Beth Moore, p. 35.
‘Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.’ Romans 12:2